Three class lessons, organized by age, are held throughout the year. Students form social and musical connections through group activities.
We play Jeopardy using music categories such as Rhythm, Composers, Ear Training. Students like card games such as Musical Spoons, War, Old Maid and Crazy 8’s, all using music concepts.
Older students like the games as well!
Sometimes we watch a music video and eat popcorn and then discuss the video
One year we watched a cartoon featuring Tom and Jerry as musicians. On a field trip to Symphony Hall to hear the pianist, Lang Lang, they were astonished to recognize an encore he played – Liszt’s Rhapsody No. 2. The students turned to me, excitement beaming on their faces and whispered— “It’s the Tom and Jerry piece!”
Other times students perform for each other
Students are taught performance anxiety-reducing techniques and learn how to be an attentive audience. Their favorite rehearsal technique is being a “bad audience” where they cough, talk and do things an audience shouldn’t do, challenging the performer to stay focused despite the distractions.
I believe in showing students the rich musical culture we are fortunate to have in the Boston area.
I take groups of students, organized by age, on field trips to our majestic concert halls in Boston and Cambridge.
We go to Symphony Hall, Sanders Theatre, The Tsai Performance Center or Jordan Hall.
Elementary students enjoy the BSO’s Youth concerts.
Middle school students are awed by the young musicians who play in the From the Top radio show tapings. I watch both middle and high school students sit on the edges of their seats listening to Rob Kapilow’s fast and fantastic explanations in his What Makes It Great series.
High school students witness historic performances by international pianists Lang Lang, Maurizio Pollini, and phenomenal local musicians.